Good morning, and happy Sunday! I'm checking in after another week of summer fun, thunderstorms, and plenty of good food. All of the highlights from the past few days, along with our easy dinners, are included in today’s roundup of Our Week in Meals.
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For those of you who are new to the blog, Our Week in Meals is where I share a little bit about what we’ve been up to over the past week — as it relates to our dinners each night. This series gives you a glimpse “behind the scenes” at some highlights from our life, shows you how I balance a busy schedule with feeding my family, and offers a few new ideas for your own weekly meal plan. Now, let’s back up to last weekend…
We were wrapping up a couple of days in the mountains on Sunday, so the boys and I took the dog for a walk in the cool air before we had to get in the car to come home.
The rest of our day was spent mowing grass (Keith), unpacking and doing laundry, planning our meals for the week ahead, and making dinner. On the menu: Grilled Steak Tips...
served with Cucumber Salad...
...homemade pesto pasta, and dinner rolls. I took full advantage of the garden for this meal since it had been almost a week since I shopped for groceries. We used chives (instead of green onions) in the steak marinade, cucumbers and fresh parsley in the salad, and tons of fresh basil for the pesto.
I've got another great book to share with you this week, too! It's not a new release, but The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom was new-to-me. Called a "contemporary classic," this captivating novel tells the story of the families tied to the estate at a thriving plantation in Virginia in the decades before the Civil War. The story takes place in both Williamsburg and on a tobacco plantation in rural Virginia, so I was imagining Montpelier (right up the road from us) as I read the story. It was powerful, sobering, heartwarming, and everything in between. I couldn't put this one down!
The light was so pretty on Monday morning before the storm clouds rolled in...
The kids and I snuck out for a couple of short walks early in the day,
and picked up a sub order for a lunch treat. My favorite -- tuna salad with all of the toppings!
Tuna for lunch, and more fish for dinner that night -- this time, in the form of Baked Salmon. We paired the salmon with buttered green beans and rice. Simple and quick!
It rained steadily almost all of Tuesday morning, so we stayed inside where I tested some new fall recipes for the blog and the boys entertained themselves with Legos and Minecraft. When the sun came out at lunchtime, though, we were ready to get outdoors!
I walked over to my neighbor's farm to pick up our eggs for the week, and then we went for a swim at our friends' pool.
All of the rain we've had over the past few days has made everything beautiful and green -- a stark contrast from the dry, dead, crunchy grass of a couple weeks ago!
Dinner that night was one of my childhood favorites: Chicken Pot Pie, plus a green salad served on the side.
We met friends at the pool on Wednesday morning, and then my in-laws stopped by for a visit outside after lunch -- including batting practice with Pops!
I made Fried Pork Chops for dinner (just 5 ingredients!),
along with Mashed Sweet Potatoes,
Homemade Applesauce, and steamed broccoli. That meal tasted like fall (if only the weather would agree)!
More baseball in the yard on Thursday -- this time before 7:00 a.m.!😳
I did some cooking and house work in the morning, and then the boys and I got out in the woods for some fresh air after lunch.
A friend recently had a surgery, so I dropped off dinner for her family that evening. Naturally, I made the same meal for us to have for dinner as well. First, Vegetable Lasagna (plus Italian sausage that I added to the sauce),
along with a green salad and a loaf of No-Knead Bread.
I had some really good peaches on the counter from the market last weekend, so I baked a Cinnamon Streusel Peach Cake as well. The cake is nice because it works well with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for dessert, or with a cup of coffee for breakfast.
We scrapped our plans for the pool on Friday morning since it was cloudy and relatively cool, and instead met my parents at a little local spot that we've been wanting to visit for ages. Blue Ridge Pottery is a self-serve shop where you can purchase handmade pottery on an honor system. That meant no employees, no other shoppers, and we had the place to ourselves! Of course, I had to support the local artists and come home with a few goodies...
My folks then joined us for lunch on our front porch before they headed home for the afternoon.
I kept dinner really simple that night, and just served Sloppy Joes and potato chips,
as well as veggies with homemade hummus,
and Watergate Salad. I found a box of pistachio pudding in my pantry when I was reorganizing recently, and realized that it had been way too long since I'd made this favorite dish.
Beautiful evening light!
We picked up a bounty from our farmer's market order on Saturday morning, including corn, blueberries, canary melon, okra, tomatoes, red cabbage, dinner rolls, apple cider, pork breakfast sausage, and steak.
That canary melon is delicious -- tastes like a sweet and juicy cross between a honey dew melon and a cantaloupe. Unfortunately, I just about sliced my index finger off with a sharp knife while cutting it...😩
The boys played baseball at the park that afternoon while I walked the dog,
and then I put Keith in charge of the grill for dinner, while I prepped the sides. We had Marinated Grilled Shrimp,
along with Okra and Tomatoes,
and Couscous Salad. Plus crescent rolls from a can, which the kids love!
There you have it -- another week of easy dinner ideas! Thanks for joining me here again today. Have a wonderful Sunday!